Defending Against Oakland Drug Charges
State and federal regulations surrounding controlled substances are complex and occasionally contradictory. As such, defending against Oakland drug charges is not a simple process. A defendant needs a trained, trusted legal professional who understands the nuances of drug laws and can work to build an effective defense. If you are facing charges, contact a dedicated drug lawyer today.
Recreational and Medicinal Drugs
A large number of drug cases in Oakland revolve around drugs that are actually legal in certain circumstances: opioids and marijuana. The confusion regarding the legality of these substances stems from conflicting medicinal and recreational uses.
People expect to be able to take a medication to solve almost any problem, but some drugs, such as opioids, were never intended for long-term use even under medical supervision. Nonetheless, these drugs are sometimes overprescribed, and users become addicted. Soon, users need more of the drug to reach the same effect, so they start using more pure forms like heroin and morphine. This could lead to severe problems of overdoses and long-term addiction, which accounts for a large number of Oakland heroin cases. The confusion comes when society mixes legal, medicinal oriented drug use with recreational use.
The same is true with marijuana, although it is not as dangerous or addictive as opioids. Oakland is seen as laissez-faire when it comes to marijuana. A person can get a license to sell marijuana legally in stores, and one does not need a medical recommendation from a doctor to use or sell marijuana. However, law enforcement and the District Attorney will enforce crimes related to the unlawful sale, transport, and distribution of marijuana. As a result, marijuana offenses are still charged regularly in Oakland, despite recreational cannabis being legal.
Constitutional Issues Surrounding Oakland Drug Cases
The most common constitutional issue in Oakland drug cases is a violation of the Fourth Amendment, which guarantees the right of a person to be secure in their person, home, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures.
To make the searches lawful, there must be a certain degree of probable cause, depending on the circumstances. In most cases, the law enforcement officer conducting the search must have a search warrant. Any evidence, including the presence of a controlled substance, that is discovered during an unlawful search may be barred from consideration at trial. An experienced attorney may be able to determine when a search was conducted unlawfully and work to prevent any evidence from coming to court. A seasoned lawyer will know the rights one has that can help with defending against Oakland drug charges.
An Oakland Attorney Could Help with Defending Against Drug Charges
An individual should always call a lawyer after being arrested on drug charges. A defendant needs a criminal attorney who understands the constitutional rights at stake, knows the prosecutors and judges who will be involved with the case, and can dictate what steps to take before trial to improve the chance of an acquittal.
Do not try to handle drug charges on your own. Defending against Oakland drug charges is complicated, and there is too much at stake. The sooner you have an attorney, the better. Reach out today for representation.